This mammoth lawsuit began in 2003, when Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) filed suits that accused Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC) of infringing on its patents and stealing its trade secret technology used to manufacture semiconductors. The case also involved breach of contract allegations regarding a previous settlement agreement related to similar conduct by SMIC. Jeffrey Chanin, the lead attorney at Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP representing TSMC, said the case amounted to “the biggest case of wholesale corporate espionage” he had ever encountered. In addition to the sprawling scope of the case, a key challenge for the trial team was helping jurors understand and appreciate the extremely complex and detailed manufacturing processes and recipes of the technology at issue.

The Focal Point’s Role

For nearly four years, The Focal Point worked alongside Keker, Van Nest & Peters legal team and its expert witnesses to develop compelling case themes and strategy. The Focal Point created graphics for presentations at every phase of the case, including settlement meetings, bench trials on specific issues, and the decisive nine-week jury trial. Chanin praised The Focal Point’s involvement, declaring “We knew going into this complex trial that it would be essential to work with The Focal Point from early on to focus our presentation and bolster our story with clear, persuasive, attention-getting graphics. There is no other firm that delivers like they do. You get more than just graphics support with The Focal Point; you get sound judgment, creativity, storytelling ability, and valuable feedback. In every argument and at every turn, our presentation was superior because of The Focal Point’s contributions.”


The first phase of the trial ended in a unanimous jury verdict of liability against the Defendant. The parties reached a $200 million cash settlement prior to the completion of the damages phase in November 2009.


Superior Court of California (Alameda County)

The Focal Point’s Client

Keker & Van Nest & PetersJeffrey Chanin
Brian Ferrall
Ashok Ramani